The month of June has been good to General Motors. Despite a rash of recalls, sales hit a monthly high not seen since 2007.
Brand loyalty, the likes of which Naomi Farmer said she’d experienced all her life, may have been one reason why.
Farmer leased a new Equinox last year. Despite recalls dating back to January of 2014 that involved millions of automobiles, the Brook Park woman said she expected to make her next new car purchase in a GM showroom.
"You don't know what's going to happen down the line with all these other car companies," she said.
Brand loyalty aside, it’s possible unprecedented deals may also have driven new car sales at dealerships, like Serpentini Chevrolet of Strongsville.
"Sales have been good,” said Ryan Serpentini, sales manager, “We're up about 15% to 20% over last June."
Serpentini told Fox8 his customers haven't been shy about asking questions related to the recalls, such as one involving an ignition switch flaw affecting close to 3.5 million vehicles.
"The only thing we can do, since it's out of our control with the recalls, is do the best job that we can, communicate to the customer and be as transparent as possible," said Serpentini.
Serpentini said GM had made financial incentives available to the general public never seen before. For instance, he said 'best pricing,' only available to employees, has been offered to owners of some cars affected by faulty ignition switches. It's a break that can subtract more than five percent from a sticker price.
Rebates on lease deals, military discounts and zero down payments may also have provided enticements to buy.
Serpentini said incentives weren’t available on all transactions because incentives varied from one model to the next. He also told Fox8 some deals could be stacked while others were exclusive offerings.
Regardless, they all represented financial incentives designed to lure wary customers whose confidence didn’t match Naomi Farmer's.
"I'm a GM person totally," she said.
General Motors CEO Mary Barra said she is determined to set a new industry standard for
vehicle safety, quality and excellence.
“Our customers deserve more than we delivered in these vehicles,” she said.